How to hold a handstand for a longer time turorial

June 9


How To Hold A Handstand For A Longer Time

By Yasuko

June 9, 2022

Press Handstand, Handstand Coach

One of the most frequently asked questions and desired skills in handstands are “Consistency for holding longer time”. Yes, it is a great feeling to achieve this level for handstands.

Let’s have a closer look at it.

For holding a handstand longer time we need some components.
In this article, I would like to introduce 2 drills for you to increase your endurance in holding a handstand. Make sure you warm up your body, especially the wrists, arms, and shoulders, and a bit of jumping jack for some hops and kick-ups.

1. Alignment - Make your body as straight as possible like a stick

Straight alignment makes a handstand holding much more accessible, check your handstand shape and work on your problem.
  • Shoulder Flexion - Many might believe that they already figured out to flex the shoulders good enough, but it's not good enough yet. Squeeze your remaining energy to press higher as much as you can by squeezing the elbows toward each other to engage the wrists even harder. Trust yourself, there is still a tiny space to add a little push to elevate your shoulders.
  • Hollow Body Position - This is "core engagement" in my opinion for handstands because a hollow body is through hugging in the rib cage plus tucking the tailbone, instead of arching the lower back.
  • Core Engagement - Rib in, Tuck the tailbone towards the spine
  • Bone Stacking - the wrists under the elbows, the elbows over the wrists, the shoulders over the wrists,  the hips over the shoulders, the knees squeezing towards each other, and feet pointed and touching together

2. Balance + Re-balancing skill

After you figured out the straight alignment it is all about fine-tuning with your hands to hold the balance and re-balance.

  • Hand Placement- There is no one size for everyone. Find your position which works the best. Shoulder width apart, narrower or wider, vary individually. Explore different position to find your happy position.
  • Fingertips/ Knuckles decide the balancing skill as fine-tuning. The first thing you need to figure out is again the straight alignment. If your shape isn't straight yet, holding for a long time isn't easy and unnecessary struggling. Work on your straight shape first and then balance longer. Not the other way around. 

3. Strength for Endurance

Holding a minimum of 60 seconds without/with a wall is a good indicator to know your strength. If you cannot hold for at least 60 seconds handstand, add on the wrist, arm, and shoulder strengthening drills. I have a super effective all-in-one drill 
  • Increasing overall strength for handstand skill
  • Balancing & Re-Balancing skill
  • List Element

4. Awareness/Focus of Entire Body Control

I know it is already a lot of work and the checklist is huge. On top of all of the above requirements, there is work to add which is "Awareness" and "Focus". Anyway it is always a good to know even you cannot figure out everything now what is necessary to achieve a good handstand skill. 
  • Gazing Point - Keep your gaze on ONE SPOT and that is between the wrists. NOT between index fingers, NOT between both thumbs. Exactly between the wrists. The main reason for this gazing point is your neck tension. The neck MUST be relaxing for a longer hold and flexibility to re-balance.
  • Pointed Toes -If you have a look at advanced hand balancers around the world, you might notice that they all strictly point the toes. Pointing toes is THE Magic Key for holding the balance for a longer time. Point your toes firmly! Not just a kind of pointing, seriously pointed.  
  • Squeezed Knees and elbows toward each other at all times, never release.
  • Lifted Rib Cage for breathing to stabilize the position (see my other blog article “Breathing technique for handstands”)

Closing Thoughts for Today:

Make your handstand practice a daily habit. It doesn’t have to be a long session, but you practice handstands every day and possibly a couple of times per day. It is all about the practice. You don’t have to be talented or a superman. For your success find your weakness and work on it. There is no shortcut.

Perform these drills every day. It’s just 1-2 minutes of practice. You will soon be able to hold a handstand. Play around and see what happens. Just as I did through these practices, your body will learn the balance skill and strength most shortly. The best workout for handstands is always to go upside-down. In my opinion, there is no need to do workouts for each part of your body. Go upside-down as much as you can. That is the best and fastest way to achieve your goal.

I hope you will enjoy your handstand practice. Please let me know your progress in a comment below and see you in my next video.

Thanks for reading this article so far. I appreciate that. Happy handstanding! See you in my next article. My next blog post will be released on next Thursday.

Please feel free to comment with any questions or feedback below. I am happy to hear from you and will do my best to answer your feedback.


About the author

My name is Yasuko and I'm passionate about handstands, yoga movement and flexibility.  I immersed myself in research a lot to inspire myself & experiment for physical development. This has led to the person I am today.

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